Born in 1947 in Chicago, Illinois, Gayle Pearson always loved writing. She studied journalism at Northern Illinois University, then changed her major to English and graduated in 1970. She attended San Jose State University in 1976 and 1977. Pearson planned to teach, but discovered that teaching was not the career for her. She worked as an editor, then a social worker, but continued to write, writing her first story for young adults in 1973. In addition to books, Pearson writes articles for newspapers and magazines, and often sets her stories in the Midwest, where she grew up. Pearson today lives in the San Francisco Bay area and writes stories, both historical and contemporary, about the dynamics of family relationships.